The Best Home Decor Start up Ideas
Home decor start up ideas
Home furnishings shoppers used to start with the likes of Ikea, graduate to, say, West Elm and eventually dabble in Williams-Sonoma or Restoration Hardware. Now with tools like Pinterest and design blogs providing endless inspiration and access, there are a lot more choices, variety and experimentation.
And creating a coherent, polished yet personalized aesthetic no longer requires an expert eye, bundles of free time or a hefty disposable income.
Entrepreneurs have entered the decor game and things are heating up.
Home furnishings is a $79 billion industry, according to IBIS World as of December, and that space is attracting innovators and investors alike.
Last month housing starts reached their highest level since 2008, according to the Department of Commerce, demonstrating growing consumer confidence and a renewed interest in home investment.
1. Affordable Outsourcinag.
Historically, professional interior design was an expensive luxury. Luckily for consumers, though, hiring a designer just became affordable with new online business models, standardization and price transparency.
A new bespoke decor service that claims to be "changing the design industry one interior at a time," Home polish matches clients with local interior designer talent (based on zip code), available for hire by the hour, at a reasonable price. A one-hour consult in the customer’s home is available at a cost as low as $50.
2. Online crowdsourcing
Laurel & Wolf takes the practice of contractors' bidding on a project to the next level. A customer submits photos of a space online and receives design ideas and style boards from multiple designers around the country. Once the consumer chooses a favourites design, he or she receives a personalized floor plan and shopping list along with instructions on how to DIY the space from the before to the after.
3. Style profiling
One challenge in home decor is making decisions. There are millions of products to choose from, so consumers rely on heuristics to help them commit. Customers like style profiling to help them articulate preferences and narrow down the scope of choices.
Tastemaker, of San Francisco, provides an “e-decorate” service by using a questionnaire that helps customers define their taste. More than just a gimmick, the ecommerce site's genius then recommends products and interior designers the customer would like, and, I've been told, the results are spot-on. The service quickly became popular so it’s currently not accepting new client projects
4. Cutting out the middle person
Slicing out the middleman is in vogue these days and the home decor industry is no exception. As is the case with many industries, home decor has a long supply chain. Several new stratus are remodelling this supply chain and bringing down the price tags.
Two new companies work directly with makers and manufacturers to provide quality designer furniture, resulting in more affordable prices for the shopper.
Interior Define is one such online furniture retailer that works directly with makers and manufacturers, providing designer furniture without a retailer mark-ups. Based in Chicago and founded by a former Bonobos ecommerce veteran, Interior Define has attracted $3.2 million in funding since its start in 2013, according to Crunchbase. Bonobos founder Andy Dunn is one of the company's advisors.
5. Resale sites
For the shopper who likes a treasure hunt, several new resale sites are cropping up, all with a similar offer: well-curated, high-quality, affordable pieces that are “gently used.” It takes time to comb through the inventory, but the end result is home decor with a unique story behind it.
AptDeco is a smaller player in New York City, but just expanded its service to Washington, D.C., Boston and Philadelphia.
6. Lifestyle marketing
Many entrepreneurs today know product marketing can involve more than selling a product: It can sell a benefit. In the case of home decor, the benefit is the lifestyle that comes with the chair. Many decor companies are changing their merchandising strategy and organizing products by theme rather than category.
Dot & Bo launched in San Francisco in 2013 as an online furniture seller. The company is positioning its site to become a lifestyle brand as well as a source for content, having recently hired media and entertainment veteran Nancy Tellem. Its collections are cantered around creative themes, making it easy for someone to create a coordinated look to match a lifestyle.
7. Out-of-the box solutions
MACK is one such company, taking the staged-room concept a step further by offering fully designed rooms for sale at the click of a button. Launched in San Francisco in 2013, MACK aims to replace the need for an interior designer altogether and solve one of the biggest challenges consumers face when decorating -- being able to envision the complete, finished look of their home.